Day in Brexit: ‘Don’t mention the ‘B’ word!’ say European officials
Mandarins in Brussels have lately avoided the term ‘Brexit’ in official press conferences, although officials say they still use the ‘B’ word in internal communications.
While the ban does not apply to commissioners, EC President Jean-Claude Juncker avoided using the term at the G7 gathering in Japan.
According to a leaked email obtained by Politico, the EU commission has issued official lines to take on the June 23 referendum.
These include the noble recognition that it is “for the British people to decide if they want the UK to remain a member of the European Union,” and the worrying admission that the commission has no “plan B” in the event Brits actually decide to leave.
“The Commission does not want to enter into the details of plan B, because we do not have a plan B, we have a plan A: Britain should stay in the European Union as a constructive and active member of the EU.”
The Remain camp won a ringing endorsement from an unusual source on Monday – the Cornish Pasty Association (CPA).
The industry body announced its support for remaining in the EU, citing the bloc’s protected food names system.
CPA chairman Jason Jobling said as there is “no clear evidence available to demonstrate that Brexit would enable that protection to continue, the CPA supports Britain remaining in the EU and being able to participate in that system.”
Voter registration extension faces legal challenge
Whitehall’s controversial decision to pass urgent legislation extending the voter registration deadline for the EU referendum could face legal action.
Leave.EU founder Arron Banks said there are grounds for a judicial review into the move, which he described as “unconstitutional.”
Urgent legislation was tabled after the government’s voter registration website crashed under the weight of user traffic on Tuesday night, two hours short of the original cut-off point.
France sharpens the guillotine
French officials are reportedly keen to punish the UK in the event of a Brexit as a way of deterring other nations from leaving the union.
According to sources quoted in Politico, France plans to push other EU states to rapidly void all existing treaties and agreements binding Britain to the EU.
Paris will be in a rush to withdraw subsidies, re-evaluate trade relationships sector by sector, and deny British supervisory bodies recognition from the EU.
Ironically, France has the second highest level of Euroskepticism in the bloc, according to a Pew Research Center survey published on Tuesday. Just 38 percent of French people support the EU.
London’s pre-vote gold rush
Gold sales have risen in the UK since the latest polls indicate the Leave campaign is gaining momentum.
London-based ATS Bullion reported a 5-10 percent rise in sales, while BullionVault.com said the growth in demand from the UK is outstripping other regions.
“In the coming weeks, we’re expecting to be busy,” said GoldCore director Mark O’Byrne.
“The recent polls [on Brexit] are going to create more jitters ... that should lead to quite robust demand as we run into polling day.”